Dunn State Park

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Dunn State Park
Dunn Pond State Park.jpg
Dunn Pond
Map showing the location of Dunn State Park
Map showing the location of Dunn State Park
Location in Massachusetts
LocationGardner, Worcester, Massachusetts, United States
Coordinates42°34′48″N 71°58′12″W / 42.58000°N 71.97000°W / 42.58000; -71.97000Coordinates: 42°34′48″N 71°58′12″W / 42.58000°N 71.97000°W / 42.58000; -71.97000[1]
Area132 acres (53 ha)[2]
Elevation1,119 ft (341 m)[1]
Governing bodyMassachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation
WebsiteDunn State Park

Dunn State Park is a public recreation area surrounding a 20-acre (8.1 ha) pond in Gardner, Massachusetts. The state park covers 132 acres (53 ha) and is managed by the Department of Conservation and Recreation.[3]


The park's land was bequeathed to the city by furniture manufacturer John Ainsworth Dunn upon his death in 1915.[4] The land was later transferred to the state.

"Dunn Pond is located on Rt. 101 (on Pearl St.) just off 140 and Rt 2. It is frequented by Picnic goers and family swimmers. There is a picnic area with almost a dozen picnic tables and fireplace grills. There is a nearby grassy knoll which is great for playing games or sports like Frisbee. A trail that encircles the pond has exercise, "Vita Courses" along the way. There are also little trails that veer off the main path for adventuring, fishing, or just to get a better view of the parks natural scenery.

"There are several locations around the lake to sit on a bench, and there are even more docks to fish from. One such location is accessible by car via Betty Spring Road. Visitors can drive up and park behind the lake and sit on the benches, the fishing dock, or visit the wooden bridge. Every year, the lake is stocked with fish, and fishing derbies are held, (usually on Sundays). The state also hosts a myriad of events at the pond; from cross country races, to log rolling and chain saw contests.

"During the summer, you can often catch the ice cream truck, which sometimes stops here. This is great for the kids, as are the two playgrounds by the public swimming area. There are Life guards on duty during daytime hours in the summer. At times, you can rent a paddle boat or canoe and take it out on the water. In the fall, runners from the nearby Gardner High School use the recently built bike trail. This is a great place to run or walk your stroller, dog, or friend for some exercise, and is a scenic and serene trek through the forest.

"The winter season is less frequented by visitors. At times the city does clear the ice for skating however, which is very nice because of the lodge on the Dunn park grounds. There is a warm fireplace and couches to sit on. Vending machines and public bathrooms are also in the lodge and available year round for changing or snacking. Park rangers are around all year to answer any wildlife or activity questions.

"A Totem Pole was created in 1980's by Ralph Fleurant. It is located towards the entrance."

— Thomas Meiners[5]


  • Publicly guarded swimming area
  • Picnic area
  • Wheel Chair Accessible
  • Boating (non-motorized)
  • Pay-per-ride Paddle Boating
  • Boat Ramp
  • Canoeing
  • Fishing
  • Hiking
  • Skiing (Cross-Country)
  • Visitor's Center
  • Walking Trails
  • Ice Skating (sometimes)



Parking fees are in effect at Dunn State Park from Memorial weekend through Labor Day.

  • Car - $8 MA Vehicle, $10 non-MA Vehicle
  • Annual Pass - $60 Massachusetts Resident / $85 Out of State
  • Lifetime Senior MassParks Pass - $10
  • Vehicles bearing a HP plate or placard or Disabled Veterans plate, as well as Massachusetts seniors who are 62 years of age or more and have a Mass. Senior Citizen Pass from the DCR are allowed in free of charge as long as space is available[3]


  1. ^ a b "Dunn Park". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
  2. ^ "2012 Acreage Listing" (PDF). Department of Conservation and Recreation. April 2012. Retrieved January 17, 2014.
  3. ^ a b c "Dunn State Park". MassParks. Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. Retrieved January 17, 2014.
  4. ^ "Trail Map" (PDF). Dunn State Park. Department of Conservation and Recreation. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  5. ^ Thomas Meiners (lived across the street from the pond at 313 Pearl as of 2008).

External links[edit]